Daken is the son of Wolverine
and his deceased wife Itsu. Blessed with his dad's Wolverine Claws
(although with a twist or two there) and Healing Factor
, as well as the added ability to give off pheromones, Daken is a younger, darker and edgier version of his dad, who was the dark and edgy poster child of the 70s-90s. He loves Xanatos Gambits
, and seducing people just to prove he can, is apparently Omnisexual
(or at least bi-sexual) and smart enough to dupe Norman Osborn
and Reed Richards
— but still gets his ass handed to him by his father. Speaking of dad, Daken has quite a few daddy issues
Daken first appeared in "Wolverine Origins
" #10 (March, 2007), created by Daniel Way and Steve Dillon. He went on to serve as a member of the Dark Avengers
. He became the protagonist of Wolverine's ongoing (Logan got a new ongoing titled Wolverine: Weapon ax
), which was retitled Dark Wolverine
, but kept the series' numbering. He gained his own title "Daken: Dark Wolverine
" in 2010, which was ongoing until 2011.
Daken is also featured in Rick Remender's Uncanny X-Force
and Uncanny Avengers
. He was one of five characters focused on in The Logan Legacy
, a seven-issue miniseries that will be exploring the aftermath of the death of Wolverine, and also stars in the weekly ongoing Wolverines
Provides examples of
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: Just like his Dad.
- Affably Evil: Swings between this and Jerkass as it suits his whims or plans or both.
- Alas, Poor Villain: Twice, which is really saying something given his personality.
- An Arm and a Leg: Has his arm torn off by Mr. Sinister in Wolverines #1 after his healing factor was stripped from him by Siphon at the end of The Logan Legacy.
- Animal-Themed Superbeing: Under his Wolverine guise.
- Anime Hair: Daken's hair is a literal inversion of his father's. Where Wolverine's hair is big and tall on the sides, but more subdued on the top, Daken rocks a Mohawk on an otherwise bald head.
- Antagonistic Offspring: Given that he hates his father to the point where he's attempted to usurp Sabretooth's role as his Archenemy, he definitely counts.
- Anything That Moves: Daken plays with gender stereotypes like they were jazz songs with no rules. As in the scene where he seduces a female anorexic supermodel by finger feeding her a strawberry she had been afraid to eat, and then flirts with the nebbishy male fashion designer on the same page without stopping for breath. He follows this up by flirting with the Shapeshifter Mystique before the end of the comic.
- Asexual: Word of God states Daken doesn't actually care for sex, he just uses it as a way to manipulate people.
- Appropriated Appellation: Daken means mongrel in Japanese and was the name he was taunted with as a child.
- Archenemy: After Sabretooth he's the strongest contender for the title, what with his Evil Counterpart status, personal connection to Logan, and popularity among writers and fans alike.
- Ironically and despite this, Daken is shown to be profoundly saddened by Logan's death and makes an effort to give him some form of proper burial. Later during Wolverines he's insistent that Logan's remains be treated with respect once they're recovered, and is prepared to come to blows with Sabretooth when he (incorrectly) believes the latter is mocking him for it.
- Back from the Dead: Was killed at the end of Uncanny X-Force by Rick Remender. Was brought back in Uncanny Avengers by the Rick Remender.
- Badass in a Nice Suit
- Body Horror: Like his dad, Daken's healing factor means that he tends to get put through the meat grinder on a regular basis.
- The Berserker: Subverted, people expect this of Daken, given who his dad is, and Daken loves to take advantage of it. In one scene, Daken allows Norman Osborn to think that he has used Daken's temper and hatred for Wolverine to bait him, after which Daken smiles and points out the mistakes in Osborn's cultured facade.
"But more importantly, you're MY Wolverine. YOU are Wolverine. Do you know what a hero is?"
- Daddy Issues: To a horrifying degree. However the aftermath of Wolverine's death strongly suggests that, for all his issues, he may genuinely have loved his father in his own way (see Due to the Dead below).
- Dark and Troubled Past: Let's see.. he survived his mother's murder (which happened before he was born!), watched his adoptive father commit suicide, and was raised by a hated enemy of his father's. Yup.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Death Is Cheap: He apparently died in an explosion he caused after his healing factor was destroyed. He later showed up, revealing himself behind the new Brotherhood. Where, after fighting Logan a bit, he died, again.
- Now he's an undead Horseman of Death for the Apocalypse Twins.
- Delinquent Hair: His hair is done up in a mohawk.
- Depraved Bisexual: Depraved would be putting it mildly.
- Distaff Counterpart: His little "sister" X23.
- Due to the Dead: In Death of Wolverine: The Logan Legacy #5, Daken assaults an auction in Madripoor and slaughters everyone there except Viper, Mystique, and a former lover in order to retrieve the remains of Logan that are being sold there so he can give his father a proper burial. He later angrily snaps at Sabretooth not to mock his insistence that Logan's remains be treated with respect once they recover them in Wolverines.
- Draco in Leather Pants: Daken is very much a deconstruction of the dark romantic hero. Everyone who meets Daken — his father, Mystique, Norman Osborn, the Fantastic Four, Moonstone — thinks they've got him figured out. They all think they can reach him or control him. And they are all wrong.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: His dead mother Itsu is the closest thing to a soft spot that Daken has.
- Evil Costume Switch: As a member of the Horsemen of Death, he wears a black variant of his Dark Avengers outfit.
- Evil Counterpart: Daken arguably is this to his father.
- More so to his sister since Wolverine already has a long-established evil counterpart. Daken shows how Laura could have turned out (and still might) without any positive guidance in her life.
- Despite that, they get along quite well, when they don't try to kill each other that is.
- Eye Scream: See An Arm and a Leg above; Sinister also takes one of his eyes.
- Face Heel Revolving Door: Don't expect him to stay on anyone's side for more than a day. Why everyone is continually surprised by this is a question best left for the ages.
- Fantastic Drug: Heat, Daken's new psychotropic addiction. Also, while he's drugged, there is a rather neat Art Shift. It is also arguably a MacGuffin since it also negates his Healing Factor.
- Generation Xerox: In the end, he and Skaar don't get along any better than Logan and The Hulk. Much to Wolverine's relief, because he was utterly terrified by the idea of Daken befriending gamma-powered space Conan.
- Genius Bruiser: Although not the obvious muscle head his dad is, Daken can pull this off pretty well too.
- Good Thing You Can Heal: He's done his fair share of standing around and letting horrible injuries happen to him for no reason other than this trope.
- Gray Eyes: When the colorist actually remembers what his eye color his, it's usually depicted as a steely gray. This is done most likely as a contrast to his father's much more warm blue ones.
- Healing Factor: His dad is Wolverine. Duh.
- Killed Off for Real: Drowned by Wolverine in X-Force.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: Drunkenly confesses to Logan that sometimes, he wonders what he would've been like if Logan and his mother raised him.
- His relationship with Sabretooth was implied to be this, as Victor himself says the kid was so starved for fatherly love that he would do anything Victor said.
- Manipulative Bastard: Oh God, do you want a list of the people he's messed with? He once drove a lover he was messing with to suicide to get rid of any loose ends.
- Daken is himself manipulated into getting himself killed at his father's hands by Sabertooth, an even bigger bastard.
- Mommy Issues: According to his creators.
- Mr. Fanservice: If there is a single issue that doesn't involve him not wearing a shirt, being in tight-spandex, or catering to some form of Fetish Fuel, the person who finds it deserves a Marvel No-Prize.
- Non-Action Guy: It's not that he isn't good at fighting or doesn't enjoy a decent brawl, but he spends a lot of his ongoing dealing out measured and calculated violence and only then when it's absolutely necessary. His stated reason for this restraint and his heavier focus on scheming is because he doesn't want to be the raging brute he perceives his father to be. He ultimately fails and ends his series picking a fight with the Avengers, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, and whoever else was in New York city when he attacked it.
- Not So Different: Daken says this to Skaar the first time they meet.
- He also has one of those moments with Banner who, currently depowered, convinced him he is as much of a killer as him.
- Issue in question ends with Logan telling Daken that, with their relationship as messed up as it is, at least it's not as bad as Banner's and Skaar's. Meanwhile, Bruce tells his son that at last they're not as bad as Logan and Daken.
- Later used for a much greater effect on Donna Kiel, an FBI agent who'd been hunting down Daken for the past few issues. Daken tells her that he is fond of her, regarding her as his equal, as well as labeling her a psychopath, like himself.
- He has a bit of this with X-23 as well.
- One-Man Army
- Pet the Dog: Daken loves to invoke and then subvert this trope. To put it more bluntly, this is a character who has no redeeming qualities whatsoever.
- He seems genuinely fond of X-23, (some of his private thoughts having rather disturbing connotations) who is one of the few people he treats as an equal. He also shows moments of kindness to street kids and children who have suffered rough upbringings.
- A Real Man Is a Killer: Subverted, not in the killer sense, but in the sense that Daken enjoys playing with gender stereotypes.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: The part of his origin which involves him as a baby being abandoned on the doorstep of a Japanese couple and taken in by them caused some criticism for using an old plot device that could hardly work in the 20th century. In truth, this happened frequently to children of mixed race who were born right after World War II. Mothers would sometimes leave their children on the doorsteps of sympathetic neighbors in a gamble that they would be taken in.
- Really 700 Years Old: Like his old man, Daken is older than he looks. Daken appears to be in his mid twenties or so, but was born just after World War II had ended in 1946.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Daken and Laura take turns delivering this to each other during their rampage through Colcord's base. Daken tries to call her out on her empathy for others, believing that her skills as a killer make her better than everyone around her, and that her heart only forces her to hold back. Laura flatly tells him that she doesn't fight because she has something to prove, but for something bigger than herself. She then turns this around on him, asking why he holds back by not taking the risk of allowing himself to actually care for anyone. Daken doesn't really have an answer.
- The Resenter: Towards his father, his sister, and anybody else who might have a better life than he does.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: At the end of his focus issue of The Logan Legacy, Daken spares Mystique, Viper, and Agent Kim — a former lover who was acting as Hydra's spy at the auction selling off Logan's remains — telling the latter to live a good and full life. After telling his story to his handlers but withholding his relationship with Daken, Kim is promptly killed when they probe his mind to find out just why Daken spared his life.
- Smells Sexy: He has pheromones that let him nudge people's emotions. The pheromones allow him to push people's emotions in many directions, and Daken has been shown to use this to good effect....He just prefers using it to make himself a sex god. It does not, however, work on non-humans, regardless of sexual orientation, as Hulking proved.
- The Sociopath
- Stuffed into the Fridge: Daken's mother, Itsu, was murdered by the Winter Soldier before he was born. She had almost no personality developed and was mainly a plot excuse to cause Daken and Logan to fight. His mutant healing factor kicked in and he survived long enough to be rescued by Romulus. This led to the only thing approaching a soft spot he has in memory of her.
- Super Senses / The Nose Knows
- Unobtanium: For a while there, Daken had his claws bonded with metal from the Muramasa Blade which negates healing factor, allowing him to threaten even his dad.
- Unwitting Pawn: In Uncanny X-Force, Daken is ultimately an unwitting sacrificial pawn in Sabertooth's latest scheme to screw up Logan's life.
- Villain Protagonist: As opposed to Dad's Anti-Hero status.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: To the point of almost once an issue. Lampshaded in one issue when he begins to take off his costume for absolutely no reason whatsoever, seems to think about it, and then continues.
- Women in Refrigerators: Daken's mother, Itsu, was murdered before he was born. She had almost no personality developed and was mainly a plot excuse to cause Daken and Logan to fight. His mutant healing factor kicked in and his survived long enough to be rescued by Romulus. This led to the only thing approaching a soft spot he has in memory of her.
- Xanatos Speed Chess: This is Daken's go-to strategy for human interaction.